Why you should work in the industry previously known as advertising
Don’t get me wrong, this is not an ode to praise the awesomeness that is the industry previously known as advertising. It’s is a brief rant in response to the rants posted by Drew Magary and Hamilton Nolan in Gawker on why you should or shouldn’t work in advertising.
I am not advocating that people should spend their entire careers in the industry. That’s just unhealthy, plain simple masochistic to stages never previously diagnosed by psychologists and painful for the people in your life. But I do believe that if you want, you should spend a few, or several years in the industry and here’s why:
- In no other industry you’ll have a chance to learn something new every single day. In no other industry you’ll spend the day learning about human behavior, computers and pharmaceuticals and the next day learning about cars, sneakers and nonprofits that work with youth at risk. The industry is a heaven for those with short attention spans and for those with childlike curiosity. It will expose you to things you never knew existed and things you never considered before. It will allow you to work and live at the intersection of different fields and different ideas.
- The advertising industry has changed a lot in the past decade (or at least that’s what I am told hence I keep referring to it as “the industry previously known as advertising”), but regardless whether you work in an advertising, communications, idea, branding, design, production, social, digital, interactive, mobile, storytelling agency/firm/studio/shop/boutique/collaborative/farm/whatever else we decide to call these places, you’ll get a chance to work on an incredible range of diverse projects, or at least be exposed to such diversity of work. Regardless of what the firm you work for calls itself, we are all in the business of understanding people and their dreams and telling stories. One day you are creating a :30-seconds story to be told in TV and the next day you are shaping the core of a brand and its story that will be told for years to come. One day you are creating a story to be told on a cell phone screen and the next day you are working on story that people can experience in the form of an event.
It’s an incredible time to be in the industry previously known as advertising for a few years and what makes it so incredible is the diversity of work we get our hands on. The diversity of people, or to be more accurate the lack of such diversity, is one of the reasons why you should stay away from this industry, among many others. But that’s an entirely different story.